Chain-smoking, wisecracking private eye Philip Marlowe drives a buddy from LA to the Tijuana border and returns home to an apartment full of cops who arrest him for abetting the murder of his friend’s wife. After Marlowe’s release, following the reported suicide in Mexico of his friend, a beautiful woman hires him to locate her alcoholic and mercurial husband. Then, a hoodlum and his muscle visit to tell Marlowe that he owes $350,000, mob money the dead friend took to Mexico. Marlowe tails the hood, who goes to the house of the woman with the temperamental husband. As Marlowe pulls these threads together, his values emerge from beneath the cavalier wisecracking. —IMDb
An iconoclast whose work acutely attacked the conventions of genre filmmaking, Altman both satirized and revitalized such warhorses as the Western, the musical, and the crime drama, waging war on the sterile artifice of mainstream storytelling by creating a singularly sprawling and deliberately messy cinematic world bursting at the seams with sounds, images, characters, and plot lines. Famed for his inventive brand of overlapping (and often improvisational) dialogue and an acknowledged master of modern camera technique, Altman’s quixotic career has been uneven at best, yet he remains a pivotal figure of contemporary cinema, a true maverick responsible for many of the defining motion pictures of his times. Born February 20, 1925, in Kansas City, MO, Altman was educated in Jesuit schools prior to joining the Army at the age of 18; over the course of WWII, he flew over 50 bombing missions in Borneo and the Dutch East Indies. Upon his discharge in 1947, Altman studied engineering at the… read more
Elliott Gould. Robert Altman. Sterling Hayden. A supermarket intro scene that predates and inspires the intro scene in The Big Lebowski. An Arnold Schwarzenegger cameo. An incessant theme song. The fingerprint ink smeared on the face. Marlowe's rooftop apartment... It's beautiful. "You clawed me, you son of a bitch."
Altman's penchant for flipping genres and conventions over on their heads is nothing new. But it is always fun to see how he did this so often. The Long Goodbye is one of those films. Taking Raymond Chandler's character made popular by Bogart in the 40s, Altman turns him into an incoherent bum. Yet still, through redefining the character and giving him a tough edge of his own, the film is in a league of its own.
The story behind the very different poster designs for Robert Altman’s The Long Goodbye.
Robert Altman was of a generation prior to the movie-brat group that revitalised the American film industry in the late ’60’s and ’70’s, but his philosophy and métier perfectly fit the new mood of… read review
The hard-boiled detective is hardly easy to rely on in noir fiction as he is never a friend to either side of the law and only works with himself, which puts him way in over his head and situates him… read review
I put off seeing Robert Altman’s The Long Goodbye, mostly because I had mixed feelings on some of Altman’s output. Although I loved many of Altman’s 70’s films particularly McCabe and Mrs. Miller… read review